Six Dublin School Nordic skiers put on their Dublin XC uniforms and joined club Coach Kathy Maddock for a weekend of racing against the top skiers in eastern Canada and in the eastern United States. These races provide an opportunity for our skiers to go up against ski academy kids from Vermont and New Hampshire while matching skills and fitness with the famous Canadian clubs from places like Chelsea and Mont Saint Anne. Some of our skiers are using these races in the attempt to qualify for the few spots on the New England Team going to the Junior Nationals in Lake Placid in March. Our students race in the U16 (under age 16), U18 and U20 categories. There are four weekends of Eastern Cup racing with two races each weekend.
The first weekend involved a Pursuit style race, a very exciting event on the World Cup that really reveals who the best overall skiers are on a given weekend. The first day was an individual start and the athletes raced 5 or 10 kilometers (depending on age and gender) in the classic style. Sunday was a skate race and the skiers started where they left off the day before. The winner from Saturday started with the clock at zero and everyone else started behind the winner depending on how far back they finished the day before. The overall winner, then, was the first person to cross the finish line. Very exciting to watch!
Senior George Henry Werowinski had a breakout weekend, making up minutes on the pack compared to his results last year. He finished ahead of skiers from Division One colleges and outpaced skiers with Junior National's experience. And GH only started ski racing as a ninth grader! We will be excited to follow his development this season, and next year when he tries out for the Saint Lawrence University ski team.
Robyn McIntosh moved up into the U18 division this season and had two solid races, including a rare 10 km race on Sunday. Moving up to the U20 division Calvin Bates skied well in the blizzard on Saturday and made up ground on the second day during the skate event. Lilly Bates had a big weekend, finishing sixth in the U16 category, catching some fast ski academy kids she has been chasing for the last few years. Coming into the stadium in seventh place she made up ten meters in the final 100 meter sprint on the skiers from Stratton Mountain and Green Mountain Valley Schools, passing one of them with a foot thrust at the finish line. We had to wait twenty four hours to get the results of the photo finish!